Terror groups mass on border to cross over
By Yatish Yadav | Published: 13th October 2013 06:00 AM |
The battle of the border has been won at Keran for now, but the war is far from over. Barely had the guns and mortar fallen silent in the inhospitable reaches of the sector, and the wind that sweeps the gullies and heavily wooded hillsides cleared away the smell of cordite and fear from the forlorn villages that stand like abandoned hopes along the Indo-Pak border, the Army is gearing up once again to counter Pakistan’s last pre-winter gambit—sending 350 ISI-trained, heavily armed and prepared terrorists to infiltrate the border along the Line of Control (LoC) before the high snowfall makes crossing into
Kashmir dangerous. Sources said these could also include battle-hardened mujahideen who had cut their teeth in Afghanistan fighting NATO forces. The alert about the next infiltration wave was triggered by a telephone intercept that put Central intelligence agencies on Code Red. In a conversation with a senior terrorist commander, his handler, an ISI officer gave away clues about a strong build-up of 300-350 terrorists waiting at launch pads near Biswal and Dadiyal in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK) to cross into India under the cover of Pakistani Army fire.
ISI UPS THE ANTE: The technical data indicated rising levels of panic in the ISI, because the first snowfall of the season had already hit Shunthar Kel region in PoK last Wednesday. Top sources confirmed that terrorists would try to cross the treacherous terrain into India before October 15. Subsequently an alert was issued to security agencies including the Army, which is still keeping a close watch over Keran sector. Another intelligence input analysing the technical interception warned that ISI is imparting subsistence training to terrorists and they may even cross in winter, taking advantage of fences damaged by heavy snow at several places. “A series of inputs received since August on terrorist preparations and the storing of arms across the border came as surprise because most infiltration bids are over before winter sets in. We feel the pressure on ISI to stir up violence in Kashmir has gone up, keeping the 2014 General Elections in mind. They will try to disturb the peace by sending more terrorists and ammunition in,” sources said. They said at least 15-20 terrorists could have sneaked into India in the last week of August through Poonch. It takes at least 2-3 months to activate a terrorist after infiltration, when his handler renews contact.
A senior intelligence officer said while ISI’s Keran plot was foiled by the Army, the ISI is opening other fronts in Uri and Naugam sectors. “There is an ISI plot to push Afghani jihadis into J&K,” he said. The officer claimed the Keran infiltration bid was a meticulous and well-coordinated operation, which exposed Pakistan intelligence’s sinister plot. The Sunday Standard has accessed exclusive information about the Keran terror script, which reveals that terrorist preparations started weeks before the face-off.
CRUCIAL INTERCEPT: On September 12, static and snatches of conversation from THURAYA satellite phone captured on Indian technical equipment along LoC surprised officers manning listening posts, as the phones are generally used only by ‘senior terrorist commanders.’